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Foreign transcript for AMCAS

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by ZhaoMD, Aug 1, 2015.

  1. ZhaoMD

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    Hi, I have a bachelor degree from an Australian university. And I really really want to study medicine in the U.S.
    Here is something about me
    My undergrad GPA is only 3.0 (evaluated by WES) , this's mainly due to my health issue in the past few years, I had a major chest surgery in 2012 and developed PTSD after that.
    Two years full time research experience, gonna submit two papers for publication at the end of this year.
    50 hours doctor shadowing experience, it is extremely hard to shadow a doctor in Australia, cuz most hospitals or clinics won't allow non-medical students to be in the clinic.
    50 hours volunteering experience so far and will continue to do more.
    MCAT 36M, but about to expire soon, I will retake the new one this month.
    LOR: I will have 3 letters from my supervisors and lecturers, one of my supervisors is kinda a big deal in his area.

    I understand for an international student, it is extremely hard or even impossible to get into MD in the U.S. But I still want to give it a try. I've contacted some med schools, they all require at least an additional year of science study in the U.S, typically 30 credit hours for post bacc.


    So here is my question,
    Will the med schools in the U.S completely ignore my undergrad GPA from Australia or will they look it up at some point? I saw some threads saying that during the primary application, AMCAS won't ask you for your transcript if it's from a foreign institute, because they can't verify it even if you use WES to evaluate your transcript. But some universities may ask for your foreign transcript when it comes to secondary applications.
    If that is true, I think my chance to get into med school in the U.S is very low. Because as I know, most international students who got accepted into U.S medical schools, their applications are flawless.
    But if the U.S med schools will completely ignore foreign GPA (like they won't even ask you for it), then I think I could have a better chance. Because theoretically, doing a post bac in the U.S would reset my GPA.


    Thanks a million for your help
     
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  3. chewy2008

    chewy2008 MS-3
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    I also went to a foreign college for undergrad. Are you a U.S. Permanent resident or citizen?

    You are correct that AMCAS does not accept foreign transcripts nor WES. However, some MD schools, especially private ones, accept WES if you ask or check their websites. In general, schools won't emphasize the work you've done outside of US, but they do care about US coursework and especially recent performance.

    Your 36 MCAT is a really good score that will turn heads in MD admissions. If you can score a similar percentile on the new MCAT along with a 3.7+ U.S. GPA, I think your MD chances are good. Also try to get some shadowing in if you can.
     
  4. ZhaoMD

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    Thanks so much for this comment. Really appreciate it.

    No, I am not a U.S permanent resident. I looked up MSAR and there are 61 schools accept international student, almost all of them only accept 1 to 3 international students per year. I am just wondering how private schools accept WES? During secondaries or interviews?
     
  5. ZhaoMD

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    By the way, I only know Columbia and Penn will completely ignore foreign GPA, so this can be my advantage as long as I maintain good GPA during post bac. But considering that these are the top schools, they should be something I shoot for, not expect to get into.
     
  6. chewy2008

    chewy2008 MS-3
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    Just wondering because many schools do not accept students who are not US citizens. They may also want proof that you can afford the tuition because financial aid is very limited for international students.
    You should make a list of schools such as safeties and reaches. I recommend 30+ schools if you can afford it to increase your chances.
     
  7. ATL.F.Doc

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    No financial aid offered for international student period. OP has to provide a bank account statement as a proof, and pay tuition every year in advance.
     
    chewy2008 likes this.
  8. DeterminedIrony

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    I studied in Australia too and I did a lot of research on this. I was in almost the same boat as you are. I had outstanding grades until my very last semester where situations beyond my control made me miss a few exams and flunk out of a few classes causing my GPA to crash-land. Your best bet is either to take at least 90 credits here and apply with an amazing GPA or go through the University of Queensland-Ochsner program which had an outstanding 92% match rate so it is also a great bet
     
  9. DeterminedIrony

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    Where can I find a list of US schools that completely ignore foreign transcripts?
     
    #8 DeterminedIrony, Aug 2, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2015
  10. ATL.F.Doc

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    US schools? under grad or medical school. Be specific!
     
  11. DeterminedIrony

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    I apologize for being vague. I meant Medical Schools.
     
  12. ATL.F.Doc

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    US medicals /AMCAS do not require or verify foreign course work. You can list it on AMCAS with grades if your grades are good. In general, this is your best option for quite a few reasons:
    1) You did meh in your junior/senior year, but your cGPA is ok.
    2) You do not have to take 90 credit hours, but pre-reqs (let is say 40 hours. Technically, majority of schools will ask for 1 year or science course work just because you have bachelor).
    3) Your final calculated cGPA &sGPA would be your course work in the US.So, you better nail that along with the MCAT.

    Finally, a few schools accept international student. This will depends on your residency status when you apply,whether your permanent resident or US citizen.
     
  13. DeterminedIrony

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    Thank you for your response. I might not have been entirely clear. My mistake. I know AMCAS does not accept foreign transcripts. I however know some schools do request them either during the interview process or later in the application. My question was essentially for schools that will completely disregard them and not want to evaluate them at all.
    I ask this because while I aced my first years in college, I would like to avoid almost entirely the horror that was my last semester, so if I do not have to have my undergrad in Oz brought up, I would like to avoid it entirely.

    Also, OP, you should PM ScottishChap. He had excellent advice for international students since he applied with international credentials as well.
     
  14. ATL.F.Doc

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    I don't think you/we can run away from prior academic experience, but DO schools are an option to replace bad grades. I do not know if this interests you, it would be your call. I have non US credentials, but my case is different than yours. One thing to do is to call a few medical schools and if they will prefer/evaluate you based on US course work( which one would weigh most/ do they prefer applicants to have US degree/ do they request transcript or just a report from credentials agency service)
    I think @chewy2008 has gone through the process, and she probably will give you better idea than me.
     
  15. DeterminedIrony

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    Thank you. I certainly appreciate your feedback/advice. I am redoing my entire undergrad and so far so good. Hopefully this will be weightier than my previous failures :)
     
  16. ZhaoMD

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    Thanks, I will definitely do that
     
  17. ZhaoMD

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    Hi, I think my situation is quite similar to yours. I'm just wondering why you decided to redo your undergrad?

    For your question, there is no list of US med schools that completely ignore foreign transcripts, on the AMCAS website it only says "individual medical schools may ask you for your transcript through their secondary applications." So I just called some med schools, only Upenn and Columbia would completely ignore foreign transcripts. It's better to call them and find out which schools would ignore our aussie transcripts.

    Because I don't have a US green card, so it would be extremely hard for me to get into a U.S med school. Not like in Australia, melbourne uni actually accept around 80 international students per year. So I can imagine that I have to have 3.7+ post bac GPA/515+MCAT to get a spot in the US.
     
  18. DeterminedIrony

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    I decided to redo it because I did not really want to have to bring up my last year of college. If I have to bring up my last semester, I want to have a good backing of really solid US GPA to back me up and show I can do it. Upward trend and all that! Most schools I called wanted at least 90 US credits anyway at a minimum. I don't want to be at a disadvantage especially considering a Higher distinction in Aussie might not be evaluated as an A by wes anyway. A lot of my friends who went to grad school here had their GPA calculated and did not like the results. Long story short, I want to be able to get into a good school and eventually be able to pick a good residency. I reckon it is a better idea to take it slow and ensure I can get into a great school with solid stats.
     
  19. ZhaoMD

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    Hey, thanks for this. I've contact ScottishChap, and ScottishChap gave me some really helpful suggestions. I just want to correct one thing I said before, there is not a single medical school that would completely ignore your Aussie transcript. They will eventually have your aussie transcript brought up, eg. secondaries or interviews. Then it will become a big problem. So I think instead of doing a post bac, I'd better to get a second degree in the U.S and transfer some credits from my aussie degree into the U.S degree.

    I totally agree with you now. Which uni did you attend in Australia? For my university, HD and distinction are equivalent to A in the U.S.
     
  20. DeterminedIrony

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    I don't intend to hide my grades. I might actually transfer a few of them to my current undergrad. I was just hoping not to have to bring it up. It was a long time ago though and it might show the things I have had to go through to get to where I am at right now.
    I researched the post Bacc idea and wrote it off too. The only other option I entertained for a while was the SMP but cost-wise it was not reasonable since it will take me the same length of time to redo my bachelors but it will cost me more. I just joined a CC and I will do 8 week and 6 week courses (General Courses and some business courses) for a year then I move to a 4-year and try to get my pre-requisite courses and my remaining classes done in another year or two with accelerated studies... I work full time too so this is all tentative. Who knows how long it will actually take.

    For anonymity I cannot say which uni I went to but it was one of the Go8 universities so it was reputable. I haven't actually had my grades converted so I might be wrong about the conversions after all.
     
  21. DeterminedIrony

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    Thank you immensely for this. I called WES this past week just to tentatively gauge how they would rate my grades and I am glad to report that most of my first and second year of college translate to good grades. Thank you for the tip. You saved me a lot of money and credit hours! If it all works out, I owe you big time!
     
    #20 DeterminedIrony, Aug 9, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2015
  22. IvyLeagueGunnin0920

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    I am a bit late to this thread, I am in the same boat as you guys though. I am newly naturalized US citizen, 2.6 GPA from the Philippines ( I regret drinking and partying for all 4 years . I got a 2nd degree in the US with a 4.0 for BCPM and 4.0 AO , same with my masters degree in medical sciences. My only issue is that my primary application GPA will not show grades for freshman and sophomore year since I will only have 2 years official US-credits and the rest were transferred.
     
  23. y123

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    I have a foreign transcript, and not a single school asked me about it pre-interview or pre-acceptance.
    I would think the majority of schools ignore it completely.
    However, I did write in my personal statement that I did really well in the foreign school.
     
    #22 y123, Jun 14, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  24. y123

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    I did not report a single course from my foreign school (expect for credits transferred to a US school), and no school asked me about my foreign transcript at all.
    Just follow AMCAS instruction, and you will be fine.
     
    #23 y123, Jun 14, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  25. IvyLeagueGunnin0920

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    Good to hear, what schools did you apply to and how many accepted? How many US credits do you have?
     
  26. y123

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    I have 50 US undergrad credits and 70 graduate credits.
    Applied to ~28, and got >12 interviews, and not a single school asked about my foreign transcript.
    How many US credits do you have?
     
  27. IvyLeagueGunnin0920

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    Great! I have 120 undergrad credits and 40 for grad. I actually did not apply yet this year because I need a conditional release from the army signed by the surgeon general. So the 2017 cycle will be my year. Is it ok if I ask about your US credit GPA? Was that the only GPA that mattered? I really want to know because my GPA in the US is flawless at 4.0 BCPM and AO for undergrad and grad, but my foreign transcripts have a horrific GPA ( 2.5 ) , spent most of my time abroad being a jackass. I am glad to hear that the schools you interviewed with did not care about the foreign credits.
     
  28. y123

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    You should be fine. I don't think any school will ask you about your foreign transcript. They will definitely need it for matriculation, but not necessarily for interview or acceptance.
    I also have a 4.0 US GPA.
     
    #27 y123, Jun 15, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  29. y123

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    You don't need to report any foreign course or grade on AMCAS unless they were transferred. Don't worry about it.
     
    #28 y123, Jun 15, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  30. IvyLeagueGunnin0920

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    Thank you for your input. I really appreciate it. The last thing I want to ask is, does it matter if your US undergrad work was another bachelors degree? Does it matter if it is a 2nd US bachelors degree or just a post bacc program? My second degree in the US is actually an associates degree ( it was necessary to be combined with my bachelors degree to take an American Society of Clinical Pathologists exam ; not a desperation move ) plus a post-bacc program at Harvard Extension School as well as a masters. I do hope ADCOMS do not see this community college degree in the US as a bad thing , and I hope the Ivy League pre-requisites would overshadow this.
     
  31. DrMidlife

    DrMidlife has an opinion
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    the problem with not submitting your foreign transcripts is that you'd be committing fraud. you might be halfway through med school & $100k in debt when it gets found out & you get kicked out.

    read up on how/whether that foreign GPA gets used. nobody is going to care about your foreign work unless it's averaged into GPA calcs.

    don't take any one person's advice too seriously. be the grownup.

    best of luck to you.
     
  32. brainnurse

    brainnurse Inquisitor, Assassin, High Summoner
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    The instructions for foreign transcripts are clearly outlined. If the credits were transferred into a US school AND appears on a US transcript, you need to enter it. If it doesn't appear on a US transcript, then it does not need to be reported. That's it. That's all.
     
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  33. y123

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    Yes. AMCAS instruction states clearly that it will not accept any foreign transcript, or need the courses to be enter on AMCAS, unless the credits were transferred to a US school.
    OP, if you transferred your credits to a US school, you have to report the courses and grades.
    I think a few years ago, AMCAS did require WES evaluated foreign transcript, but the policy is different now.
     
    #32 y123, Jun 16, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016
  34. y123

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    Yes, I think all med schools do need all transcripts, domestic or foreign, pre-matriculation.
     
    #33 y123, Jun 16, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016

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